MarqART - A Blend of the Ancient & Modern
MarqART is the perfect amalgamation of the ancient craft of Marquetry with modern woodworking techniques and innovative processes in capturing artistic images in wood. The word MarqART actually comes from combining the words Marquetry and Art. We believe the combination of these words perfectly describes our MarqART Wood Designs.
MARQUETRY (mär´- ki - tree) n
The art of creating intricate designs by fitting together individually cut pieces of thin wood, ivory, metal, etc.
ART (ärt) n
The intelligent and skillful means of creating something beautiful.
Covering crude or plain furniture surfaces with elegant impressions or imaginative designs using thin wood slices or veneers can be traced back to 16th century Italian cities of Florence and Naples. It quickly spread throughout Europe and flourished under French Marquetry masters like Fleming Pierre Golle and Andre-Charles Boulle. They were the luxury furniture makers for French royalty.
Drawing inspiration from such masters, MarqART had its modern beginnings in Randy West’s grandfather, a traditional Marquetry craftsman. This passion passed on to his sons and grandsons who persisted in carrying on the old tradition while perfecting it with modern scientific techniques. So much so, Randy has evolved a proprietary process in the production of the MarqART Wood Design pieces that he and his family create.
Individual & Unique
Every piece of artwork created by Randy is unique. No two MarqART pieces are ever completely alike. Natural variations in the flow of wood grain patterns, changes in the tonal shades of wood color, all contribute to making each MarqART item an individual and unique piece of workmanship that will, over the years, acquire its own personality and character and will be totally different from any other piece. Even if the product and design are the same.
Creating a MarqART piece is a labor-intensive process. Each design from conception to actual production takes a long time. Every 6”x8” design typically takes over 50 hours to create and prepare for production. The larger designs take considerably longer.
The entire process starts with the selection of a design. Not all designs lend themselves easily for crafting in wood. An added complication is the need to minimize the number of pieces to preserve the symmetry of the design and to utilize available woods. For instance, blue is not a color that occurs naturally in wood and one is forced to exert imagination in such cases.
Once a subject has been selected, say a Buffalo, a great deal of effort goes into studying Buffalos so that one can create a line drawing of different pieces that when put together like a puzzle will make an appealing image and be considered a work of art. Great care goes into each piece: how it will fit with the pieces next to it, how to make it look just right, and still work in our production process. A mirror image of the design is also created.
A great deal of effort goes into selecting the right wood (grain pattern, color, orientation, variations of color and grain pattern, etc) that will work for each piece of the design. It is not unusual for some designs to have over 20 variations of woods tested together and in combination before settling on the final wood set for a design. We try to select two different wood sets for use in our production process.
Once the wood types have been selected, the artwork and pattern finalized, each creation is ready for production and assembly into the final work of art using our proprietary process. Prior to the final finishing step, each piece is inspected for defects and only then is it hand signed in gold ink. After the final finishing step is applied, it is hand assembled into a frame or jewelry box, inspected and cleaned one last time, it is finally packaged and prepared for shipping.
High Quality Build & Finish
The final assembly of each product occurs after an order has been received. Randy and his family inspect and assemble each piece individually to exacting standards of workmanship. This ensures the quality, structural integrity, and longevity of each product.
Our policy is to use sustainable forest resources, for example, the rubber wood used in our frames and boxes come from rubber wood plantations. Preventive measures like UV blocking material, satin lacquer finish, and other techniques are used to protect the artwork from fading.
MarqART prides itself in creating original artworks that will be valued for generations. From the hand-signed gold ink signature that verifies a unique authentic work of art to the satin finish and UV treatment, you will hold a product created out of passion and skilled craftsmanship designed to last for a very, very long time!